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Tim Armstrong

Tim Armstrong

Timothy Lockwood Armstrong (born November 25, 1965), known simply as Tim Armstrong and also by the stage names Tim Timebomb and earlier in his career known as Lint, is a multi-Grammy Award-winning American musician, songwriter, artist, director, poet, record producer and independent record label owner. He is best known as the singer/guitarist for the punk rock band Rancid and hip hop/punk rock supergroup the Transplants. Prior to forming Rancid, Armstrong was in the influential ska punk band Operation Ivy. In 1998, along with Brett Gurewitz of the band Bad Religion and owner of Epitaph Records, Armstrong founded Hellcat Records. In 2012, through his website, Armstrong started releasing music that influenced him, along with stripped-down cover songs of his own work under the name Tim Timebomb. He has released at least one song per week since late 2012. Armstrong is also an accomplished and sought-after songwriter for other artists. Armstrong won a Grammy Award for his work with Jimmy Cliff and Pink and has also worked with Gwen Stefani.Basic RadioBasic Radio was founded in 1985 and included Matt Freeman and Tim Armstrong. The band never released any albums or EPs, but recorded demos and were featured on local compilations. 2 years later they broke up and Operation Ivy was founded shortly after.Operation IvyIn 1987, along with singer Jesse Michaels, bassist, Matt Freeman and drummer Dave Mello, Armstrong formed the ska punk band Operation Ivy and enjoyed modest success before the group disbanded in 1989, the same night the album was released. The band would go on to achieve worldwide cult success in the years following its break-up.DownfallDownfall was an aftershock of Operation Ivy. Armstrong, Freeman, and Mello were joined by Mello's brother Pat, and Jason Hammon. Pat and Jason would both play guitar, while Armstrong took up duties on vocals. They lasted three months (December 1989 to March 1990), playing only at a few parties and twice at Gilman St. They released one song on Maximumrocknroll's They Don't Get Paid, They Don't Get Laid, but Boy, Do They Work Hard! compilation, one song on David Hayes' Very Small World compilation, one song on Lookout! Records' Can of Pork compilation, and recorded a demo. It disbanded when Freeman joined MDC on bass while Armstrong was a roadie for the band, while Pat and Dave went on to form Schlong.RancidAfter the demise of Operation Ivy, Armstrong (being severely depressed) began to suffer from alcoholism, and eventually became homeless. During this time, Freeman suggested the two start a new band together, partially in hopes of curbing Armstrong's alcohol addiction. Armstrong began writing songs that would appear on their first album. Their new band, Rancid would eventually go on to become one of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful punk rock bands of all time. As of 2013 they have released seven studio albums since their formation with another on the way in late 2013.The TransplantsIn 1999, Armstrong invited roadie Rob Aston ("Skinhead Rob") to add lyrics to some solo material that Armstrong had been creating in his basement, and the two worked together writing and recording music. They formed the group Transplants with drummer Travis Barker, of Blink-182, and released their self-titled debut album on October 22, 2002. A second Transplants album, Haunted Cities, was released on June 21, 2005. The Transplants break-up was confirmed by Rob Aston on January 16, 2006, when he told a reporter that the group had split. However, Barker has recently announced that the trio is currently working on a new album. They played their first show since 2006 on Conan to promote Barker's new solo album, on which the song "Saturday Night" is featured. It was announced in November 2011 on the Transplants official Facebook page that their new album would be "finished" in December 2011. The latest album entitled "In A Warzone" was released June 25, 2013 on Epitaph Records.Solo Albums/Tim TimebombIn 2007, he released his first solo album entitled A Poet's Life with The Aggrolites as his backing band. The track from that album "Into Action" was reported as the number one most played and requested in 2007 on then XM Satellite Radio channel Fungus 53.In 2012, he launched a side project under the name Tim Timebomb, initially releasing a download only album, entitled "Tim Timebomb Sings Songs from RocknNRoll Theater", containing songs from his musical film series. Since October 29, 2012 he has released a series of songs via YouTube, at a rate of one track each day starting on October 29, 2012. These songs make up a series of download only singles, to date more than 200 tracks have been released, a mixture of original compositions, covers, and re-workings of his previous songs, including those of Rancid.Other projectsArmstrong produced and co-wrote eight songs with Pink for her 2003 album Try This. Her song, "Trouble", a 2003 Rancid outtake, went on to win her a Grammy Award. He has also collaborated with Gwen Stefani on her debut album Love. Angel. Music. Baby. and has contributed guest vocals on songs for such bands as Bad Religion, Time Again, The Matches, Mest, Good Charlotte, Head Automatica, The Aggrolites and Box Car Racer. He and Matt Freeman also play in a psychobilly band called Devils Brigade.It was announced on August 12, 2011 that Tim Armstrong was working on an album with reggae artist Jimmy Cliff. Their first single, a cover of The Clash song "The Guns of Brixton", was released on October 4, 2011. Sacred Fire EP was released late November 2011. Rebirth was released in July 2012 and won the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album.Hellcat RecordsArmstrong started Hellcat Records in 1997 as a sub-label of Epitaph, owned by Armstrong's friend and Bad Religion member Brett Gurewitz. Armstrong acts as a talent scout for Hellcat, and has final say concerning what groups are signed to the label. Armstrong also owns the merchandise manufacturer Machete Mfg, which provides merchandise for bands on Hellcat Records.Signature Model GuitarsIn 2010, Gretsch Guitars introduced the G5191BK Tim Armstrong Electromatic guitar. The single cutaway hollowbody electric guitar featured a 17" wide body in a flat-black urethane finish, parallel tone bars and sound post, two “Black Top” Filter'Tron pickups, Grover tuners, big block fretboard inlays, a harp tailpiece and gold-plated hardware. Gretsch advertising for the model prominently features Armstrong with the guitar. It is based on his 1970's-era Gretsch Country Club model which he spray-painted black and flipped to accommodate his left-handed playing. The signature model is available in both right and left-handed models. Fender also put out a signature acoustic model based on Tim's favorite 60's era Fender acoustic guitar. The "Hellcat" has hellcat inlays in the 3 5 and 7th fret positions and two skulls in the 12th fret. It is outfitted with a tortoise shell pick guard and Fishman brand electronics. It is available in right and left handed models, as well as a 12-string version.Personal lifeArmstrong was married to Brody Dalle from 1997 to 2003. Armstrong met Dalle in her home country of Melbourne, Australia in 1995 when her band Sourpuss was playing the same music festival as Rancid. Dalle, who was 16 years old at the time (Armstrong was 29), at first lied to Armstrong about her age but in 1997 the couple were engaged. Dalle moved to Los Angeles to live with Armstrong and formed her new band, The Distillers. The Distillers' first two albums were released through Epitaph and Hellcat. Armstrong was inspired by his wife and wrote "Who Would've Thought", a song on Rancid's 1998 album, Life Won't Wait.

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